Whirlpool is kicking off CES with a slew of smart kitchen announcements, including an update to the Yummly personalized recipe app, voice integration with Google Assistant and scan-to-cook guided cooking technology.
Whirlpool made a huge effort at CES 2017 to move further into the smart kitchen space, showing off a suite of connected appliances. Then, in May of last year, the company acquired recipe app startup Yummly and gained an entire community of users and a host of food content.
Whirlpool spent the rest of 2017 working on taking full advantage of the Yummly acquisition and is introducing the results of its work today at CES 2018. Among the brand’s many kitchen-related announcements, Whirlpool is launching Yummly 2.0, a new version of the recipe and cooking resources app that includes image recognition, meal scheduling features and an enhanced guided cooking experience when using Whirlpool connected appliances to cook.
The next-gen Yummly app will include built-in image recognition software powered by machine learning to recognize multiple foods in one picture and dole out recipe recommendations based on what foods are shown. With a large database of food images, Yummly will continue to get better at identifying the food that users have on hand, using machine learning to evolve and grow its knowledge base.
In the Whirlpool mobile app, the company is launching the new Scan-to-Cook technology, a feature that allows users to scan a UPC barcode on frozen food packages and an existing set of instructions including temperature and cooking time for that particular food will be sent to the appliance. Scan-to-Cook setting can be customized to individual preferences if a food is preferred more or less cooked than the standard settings.
Guided Cooking Gets Better
For home chefs that have Whirlpool’s connected range or microwave, Yummly is now able to identify recipes that will work with those appliances and send cooking instructions to the device while following an interactive step-by-step tutorial in the app with images and video. While the user is instructed on what to chop, wash and prepare, the participating oven can be heating up and preparing a timer so it’s ready to go when they are.
Starting in the spring of 2018, users will also be able to control their connected appliances straight through the Yummly app – a good sign that the brand plans to continue to invest in the platform as the center of their smart kitchen strategy in 2018.
Same Day Grocery Ordering
Many smart appliances offer grocery list integrations, but Whirlpool takes it a step further in the Yummly app. The ingredients are categorized automatically in an attempt to make shopping easier (better than my Amazon Alexa grocery list which is just one giant list of things I may or may not have already bought) but even better – a new integration with Instacart means you can get the ingredients you need, delivered in about an hour.
Scheduling, Voice, Remote Start
The Yummly app lets users schedule their meals out for the week and let them know when it’s time to start cooking based on the scheduled desired eating time. And, like almost every other company at CES, Whirlpool is announcing integration with Google Assistant to be able to control connected appliances through voice command. Details on the integration weren’t provided but with Google pushing back at Amazon’s domination in voice assistants, it’s not surprising that they’re pursuing the kitchen as a space to gain mindshare. Additional features in the app lets families remotely start their appliances from outside the house to warm up the oven and get the kitchen ready for dinner.